Student-athletes, coaches must wear masks at indoor sporting events | Connecticut News

HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) – The Connecticut Department of Public Health has improved its guidelines for local school sporting events.

The announcement was made on Wednesday evening.

Due to the number of COVID-19 cases in the state, state health authorities now require all athletes, coaches and officials to wear face covers during indoor sporting events, regardless of their status. vaccine.

The amended guidelines went into effect Thursday.

Initially, the DPH recently took the decision to allow fully vaccinated athletes not to wear a mask during indoor sports competitions; given the Omicron variant and the slight increase in COVID-19 cases, however, the guidelines have been changed.

The modified mask requirement applies to sports competitions that take place indoors.

On Wednesday night at a Newington High School basketball game, the athletes were ahead of the game. They were already wearing masks.

Parents who spoke to Channel 3 said the change was the right game.

“I think it’s a good idea,” said Kelly Quick, a parent.

The Connecticut Department of Health released a statement on the matter.

Although a previous assessment was made by DPH that would have allowed fully vaccinated participants to unmask themselves in athletic competitions, the rapidly increasing rates of covid-19 cases in the community and the emergence of this more contagious variant. forced us to reconsider this assessment.

Parents like Quick said they know it could be difficult for athletes.

“I can feel for them that they are trying to play and wear the masks, but I think right now with the numbers as they are, I think that’s definitely a good call,” he said. she declared.

“As we’ve said from the start, we would align with DPH’s direction on this topic,” said Glenn Lungarini, executive director of the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference.

Lungarini said that the main objective of the CIAC is to keep children at play, but also to keep them safe.

“We have been successful in bringing kids back to sports opportunities last year and this year and everyone’s goal is to give kids opportunities and keep them active in our sports,” Lungarini said.

The updated guidelines are not only intended for athletes, but also coaches and officials.

“We will be masked in all sporting activities, including competition, regardless of vaccination status, except in cases where wearing a mask poses a safety risk,” Lungarini said.

For wrestling, the CIAC said masks should not be worn during a match or training while “actively wrestling.”

Indoor track and field throwers, jumpers, swimmers and gymnasts also do not need to wear masks when actively participating in competition.

The state’s Department of Public Health is updating its guidelines for local sporting events.

Lungarini said he emailed schools on Wednesday evening to notify them of the change.

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